As most teachers know, our profession is about so much more than just facts or whatever it is that non-teachers think it is. We spend hours everyday with our nation’s future. We see and hear things that can make us leap with joy or maybe weep with sorrow. Because your kids are our kids, too. I…
The solar eclipse of August 21, 1914, seen from 66 degrees north, in the town of Sandnessjøen, in Northern Norway. Solar eclipses are always cool, and this is especially interesting to me because the center of this eclipse, the point at which the Moon most completely obscured the Sun, passed over my hometown one hundred years ago. The German scientist Adolf Miethe took a huge risk traveling to Norway to build an observatorium specifically for this astronomical event. If the day had been overcast, all would have been for nought.
Many astronomers were interested in observing this event, but the outbreak of war prevented many of them. Luckily for Miethe and his team, he got to observe the event even as his country went to war. Three of his fellow expedition members had to return back home for military duty.
Miethe is an interesting character, having co-invented both an early photographic flash and a process of color photography.
Observations of solar eclipses later helped confirm Einstein’s theory of relativity, as one of his predictions, the existence of gravitational lensing, could be seen.
The locals, however, were reportedly unimpressed by the eclipse, having expected it to be darker. Oh, well.
We’re heading into the tail end of summer - which, in the UK at least, means blackberry picking! Here’s a brief look at the chemicals that give blackberries their colour, including one that’s thought to be completely unique to blackberries.
Don’t forget you can reach plenty of other food-related posts via the food chemistry section of the site: http://goo.gl/krRszl
What Makes Humans Special?
Hallmark traits of the human body did not all arise anew in our species. Instead they emerged piecemeal in our forebears over millions of years. Many of these traits seem to have helped support two defining trends in our evolution: upright locomotion and tool use.
Today is the birthday of physicist Louis Essen, born September 6, 1908, inventor of the cesium atomic clock. Cesium (also spelled caesium) was discovered using the new method of flame spectroscopy in 1860 by two German scientists, Robert Bunsen (yes, of Bunsen burner fame) and Gustav Kirchhoff. They decided to name the new element after its unusual and unique spectrographic signature, specifically the preponderance of the color sky blue, which you can see in the spectrograph above. The word came from the Latin word caesius meaning blue-gray, often referring to the color of eyes.
Image of pollucite (a common mineral rich in cesium) courtesy Rob Lavinsky. Image of ampule of liquid cesium (although a metal, cesium is liquid at room temperature) by argentoratum. To see the spectrograph of any element, check out the cool site by University of Oregon.
Hannah Wormington (September 5, 1914 – May 31, 1994)
Hannah Wormington was an archaeologist known for her writings and fieldwork on southwestern and Paleo-Indians archaeology over a long career that lasted almost sixty years.
Marie Wormington was born in Denver, Colorado. As a young child she was able to spend most of her time with her mother and her maternal grandmother who had come to the United States from France. Being fluent in both English and French proved to be a useful asset the summer she went to France to start her archaeology career.
Wormington was the first woman to focus on anthropology for a Radcliff Ph. D., which she obtained in 1954. This was during the era in American archaeology when that there was a definite bias against women being included in some departments and in some parts of the country. While taking classes at Harvard for her Ph.D. she had a professor who requested that she sit outside the classroom to take notes.
Before obtaining her Ph.D., Wormington already had an accomplished career in anthropology, which began in 1935 after she graduated with her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Denver. Her initial areas of interest were medicine and zoology, but changed to archaeology after taking a few classes taught by E. B. Renaud, whose focus was on the French Paleolithic. He supported the idea of Paleolithic stone tool technologies in the New World that were identical to other parts of the world. Renaud suggested traveling to France to do some research.
Wormington jump started her own career through the connections she made by contacting Dorothy Garrod as soon as she was in London. Garrod became a mentor to Wormington, and she put her in touch with some notable archaeologists working in Paris at the time, including Harper Pat Kelley and Henri Martin. While working alongside Kelley, Wormington was allowed to borrow artifacts found in Europe for data collection at the Denver Museum. Martin insisted that Wormington be a part of the Paleolithic excavations taking place at Dordogne, and Wormington spent her 21st birthday doing just that.
After returning home to her native Denver, she was hired on at the Colorado Museum of Natural History (known today as the Denver Museum of Natural History) in the anthropology department until it closed in 1968, thus her appointment as a curator spanned 33 years. Because of her background as one of the foremost authorities on the subject of Paleo Indian studies, the museum was able to establish a formidable reputation. While working at the museum and before obtaining her MA and Ph.D. Wormington wrote Ancient Man in North Americaas well as Prehistoric Indians of the South West.
In the same year she left the Denver museum (1968), Wormington was the first female archaeologist to be elected president of the Society for American Archaeology. She had previously held the title of vice president twice (1950–51, 1955–56).
She was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship in 1970, and in 1977 she was awarded an honorary doctor of letters from Colorado state university. In 1983, the Society of American Archaeology awarded her the Distinguished Service Award, being the first female archaeologist to receive the award.
Just two years later she was awarded the Colorado Archaeology Society C.T. Hurst award for her significant role in Colorado Archaeology. In 1988 she was once again awarded honorary doctor of letters degree from Colorado College, the same year she was appointed the curator emeritus of the Denver Museum of Natural History.
What It Means When Women in Tech Are Told They’re ‘Too Abrasive’ (Hint: It’s Got Something To Do With Sexism)
In a recent study by linguist and startup CEO Kieran Snyder, she examined the kind of feedback men and women receive at tech companies. Snyder asked men and women in the tech industry to send her their performance reviews. She received 248 reviews from 105 men and 75 women.
This is what she found: men and women receive different kinds of feedback. Women’s personalities were criticized much more frequently in performance reviews than men’s. Men were criticized for job performance, while women were criticized for not just their work output but for being ”abrasive" or having "the wrong tone". The results are so shocking, they seem skewed.
Men received comments like “There were a few cases where it would have been extremely helpful if you had gone deeper into the details to help move an area forward.”
While women received comments like “Your peers sometimes feel that you don’t leave them enough room. Sometimes you need to step back to let others shine.”
Words like bossy, abrasive, strident, and aggressive are used to describe women’s behaviors when they lead; words like emotional and irrational describe their behaviors when they object. All of these words show up at least twice in the women’s review text I reviewed, some much more often. Abrasive alone is used 17 times to describe 13 different women. Among these words, only aggressive shows up in men’s reviews at all. It shows up three times, twice with an exhortation to be more of it.
This data validates women’s experience in STEM fields. They are stuck between a rock and hard place. Sheryl Sandberg tells them to Lean In, to speak up, and to be aggressive. While their peers and managers tell them to lean back, let others shine, and to be a little quieter.
This is just one example of how the culture in STEM fields turns women away. While other factors keep the pipeline leaky, company culture plays a huge role. Women should be encourage to speak up, to be leaders. They should not turned down when they act like one. It seems some tech companies have a long way to go to eliminate gender bias.
And please ladies, don’t be discouraged by this study. Women in tech and other STEM fields are some of the most intelligent, driven, and successful people I know. Even when they face daunting obstacles. If anything this study gives validation and motivation to the need to change the way women in STEM are treated. Remember: It isn’t just you. Other people go through this too. And it doesn’t have to be this way.
To learn more check out my episode on gender bias in STEM fields.
You keep doin’ you, STEM ladies. We need you.
If your body is asking for food, the hunger will gradually develop. Emotional hunger is a response to some sort of negative experience or feeling and is usually more of a sudden onset of a craving for a specific food. With emotional hunger you will also feel the need to eat immediately.
If you’re still not sure, wait a few minutes and see what happens. As you do this more and more it will become easier for you to distinguish between the two.
One thing that can help with anger is feeling a sense of power. Things like running, dancing, or other strong physical activities are a great way to get that energy out of your body.
Depending on what works for you- you may also want to try something more calming. Slow down, let your mind relax… sometimes that can help you to organize your thoughts which may bring on the realization that whatever your angry about isn’t all that bad or is something you can work on by staying focused.
Don’t forget to address your anger. None of this means to disregard it, push it back, or try to completely forget about it. You can’t bottle these things up inside. What you want to do is calm yourself, release that negative energy, and organize your thoughts so you can handle the anger in a safe and effective way.
If you’re lonely, reach out to someone. Text, phone, video chat, in person. Even just going outside for a walk or going to a coffee shop with your laptop.
You don’t always have to be directly socializing with people as long as you’re around them. Short term loneliness is sometimes alleviated by simply being in the presence of other people.
If you’re tired, take a look at your schedule. Are you overworking yourself? You may need to make set times within your schedule to take a break. Scheduling breaks may sound weird… but you need it. Don’t burn yourself out. Don’t take on more than you can handle.
Also take a look at your sleep schedule. Are you getting the rest you need? Maybe you need to set an earlier time to get to bed in order to wake up feeling refreshed. Your body will thank you.
The last thing is that you can’t be afraid take time for yourself or say no to things.